Afrobeat ambassador Dele Sosimi’s new album ‘The Confluence’ has been recorded and produced with Essex musician Sam Duckworth, aka Get Cape, Wear Cape, Fly; and a team of specially assembled musicians under the banner of “The Estuary 21” – with the name of the nearby river and the year, being a clue to future Confluence projects. Recorded over a multitude of sessions in 2021, this new set of songs flow with the sounds of Afrobeat, jazz, and worldly pop, and feelings of freedom, strength, and collaborative dynamism as a balm for life changing events.
Dele and Sam were introduced at Felabration 2012, the annual commemoration of the music of Fela Kuti, and promised to work together in the near future. With many live collaborations, at Afrobeat Vibration, Kentish Town Forum and lots of hanging out and mutual love, nearly ten years passed before the two musicians connected in Sam’s hometown of Southend-On-Sea in a post-lockdown creative boom, recording the album over a burst of week-long sessions in 2021. The Estuary 21 band is completed by Callum Green (The Sleeping Souls, GCWCF), Philip Van Den Brandeler (Pocket Dragon, GCWCF), Pete Fraser (The Pogues, Field Music), Afla Sackey (Afla Sackey & Afrik Bawantu, Ibibio Sound Machine), Aby Dosunmu (Dele Sosimi), Sam Ewens (Myles Sanko) with special guest appearances from Sam Eagle and Essex percussion legend, Snowboy.
Born in Hackney, East London, but soon to return to his parents’ native Nigeria at the age of four, Dele Sosimi was schooled and raised in Fela Anikulapo Kuti’s commune (which he now refers to as his university of life). After Fela’s passing in 1997, Dele went on to focus on developing his solo career and, honing his creative talents, and with much patience on his part, carved out his own Afrobeat crown. His last album, ‘You No Fit Touch Am’ (2015), was a critical success with Songlines writing “Afrobeat will never die so long as Dele’s around”, Clash declaring it “blistering Afro-funk from a true legend”, The Quietus calling it “so fresh, while staying true to the template”, and David Hutcheon’s four star Mojo review said it was “a deeper, moodier collection than other Shrine veterans have released lately”.
A veteran at 36 years old, Sam Duckworth has been releasing music as Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly for half of his life. A catalogue that includes four top 40 singles, two top 40 albums (including the gold certified ‘Chronicles of A Bohemian Teenager’ that recently celebrated its 15th anniversary), a German club number 1 single and collaborations with artists ranging from Shy FX, Baaba Maal, Lily Allen and Jehst. Recently, Duckworth produced Benjamin Frances Leftwich’s album ‘To Carry A Whale’ and has been working on the forthcoming album by Kate Nash.
Reactions & Radio Play
Radio play from Jamie Cullum (Glastonbury 2023 The Morning After Mix, BBC 6 Music); Kev Beadle (Totally Wired Radio); Mucho Soul (Totally Wired Radio); DJ Jazzcat (Ness Radio); Sven Thomschke (Radio Z 95.8, Germany)
“Brings lush jazz and global pop inflections to his trademark Afrobeat fusions.” DJ Mag
“Organically shimmering with sun-lit horns and synth powered grooves.” ★★★★ Songlines Magazine
“Sparkles with rejuvenation and enthusiasm.” 8.7/10 Backseat Mafia
“A magnificent blend of Afrobeat, soul and jazz.” Louder Than War
“Intriguing arrangements pushing his Afrobeat songwriting into fresh realms… a true master of the form.” Clash Magazine
“Well marinated in jazz-pop as Afrobeat…smooth but ear-entertaining and warm.” Arts Desk On Vinyl (UK)
Featured in Mojo Magazine.
“Dele carries on the legacy of Fela and especially Tony Allen, because he also goes into more poppy areas from time to time” Tobi Kirsch, Fazemag (Germany)
“It’s amazing.. proper.. Hard to get music like that, that feels classic.. wonderful.” Luke Unabomber (Manchester, UK)
“So far so good!” Robbie Vincent (Jazz FM, UK)
“Very nice, all round.” Thristian Global Roots (Rinse FM, Worldwide, UK)
I liked it, especially “Ride out the storm”. I will play it!” Coco Maria (Worldwide, Amsterdam)
“Lovely.” Anders Sicre (FIP, Worldwide, France)
“Really enjoying this! Will be supporting on the show.” Dan Alani (BBC Radio 1 / Represent Radio, UK)
“Gorgeous.” DJ BobaFatt (First Word, UK)
“Fantastic LP! A delight from start to finish!” Jason Palma (Footprints, Toronto, Canada)
“Open Up ,Ori Mi & Ride out the storm fave tracks on 1st listen.” Ash Selector (Solar Radio, UK)
“Cool record!” DJ Angola (Space Ibiza, NYC, USA)
Lovely, warm, beautiful production….great stuff.” Flevans (Tru Thoughts, UK)
“Soooo good!” Junior (Record Breakin’, USA)
“Groove nourishment!” Ennio Styles (3RRR FM, Australia)
“Excellent!” Veronique Prebolin (Radio Kim, France)
“Great music on the Dele Sosimi & The Estuary album, especially feeling mid to slow tempo numbers.” Mark GV. Taylor (Reference Point, Totally Wired Radio, UK)
“Played all singles on air ! Blast!!!” Olgierd (Sofa Surfing, Poland)
“FULL support for this 👍🏿🤓👌🏿” Michael Stukes (WCHR, NYC, USA)
“Glad that this album is finally released in it’s full glory after the initial single releases. A 5/5 for me!” Steve Johns (Solar Radio, UK)
“Wonderful record!” Olivier Cavaller (De La Bonne Musique, France)
“Love it, obviously ;)” Tamar Collocutor (Soho Radio, UK)
“Love the air in this one. So clear and ear pleasing.” Envee (Various, Warsaw, Poland)
“BRILIANT! Love this record.” Oli Brunetti (Collective Futuro, UK)
“This cat is amazing!” Jamal Ahmad (Jazz 91.9FM, USA)
“Fabulous music my some homegrown talent!” Raj Selli (Solar Radio, UK)
“Nice new stuff by dele!” Tobi Kirsch (HHV, Klunkerkranich, Germany)
“Lovely, we’ll be having this then.” Bob Hill (Illicit Groove Radio Show, UK)
“A red hot package from Dele and The Estuary, ‘Ride Out The Storm’ such a beautiful record, looking forward to supporting!!” Alan O’Malley (RTE Pulse, Dublin, Ireland)
“Lovely ensemble and rhythms.” Nick The Greek (Totally Wired Radio, UK)
“I love it!” Martijn Barkhuis (Various, Amsterdam, Netherlands)
“Amazing Work and collaboration!!” Enrique Domenech (Freeform Podcasts, Spain)
“An incredibly strong release from a master that just keeps putting out beautiful music.” DJ Mr Lob (Various, Australia)
“All Dele’s stuff since moving to WW45s has been great, this is no exception.” Rado Tomek (NUSpirit Club, Slovakia)
“Lovely gear as always from Dele. Top tackle.” Bean Noodler (Soul Buggin’, UK)
“Perfection!!!” Markus Milz (Radio Cora, Germany)
“Enormous!!” Simao (Toulouse, France)
“What a natural step forward and simply a great album.” Mans Stromberg (Radio Helsinki, Finland)
“Brilliant!” Erik Tchaikovsky (Nightlight Radio Show, Ukraine)
“Keep ’em coming Dele! Always enjoyable.” Steve KIW (1BTN, UK)
“Sweet stuff!” Danny Pressure Drop (Montreal, Canada)
“Beautiful EP again a fantastic music and spirit” Amar Kabouche (Fauve Radio, Hong Kong)
“Gorgeous…” Dobrimir Marzov (Radio Varna, Bulgaria)
“Never less than very good and rising to stellar, this collection keeps Dele at the top of the Afrobeat mountain.” Derek Rath (KPFK Radio, USA)
“An emotionally impressive album, great!” Sven Thomschke (Radio Z, Germany)
“Brilliant.” Dan Tenor City (Soho Radio, UK)
“Superb. Very unexpected and a different vibe . Beautiful mellow vibes.” DJ Expression (What’s Hot Radio, UK)
“Love it!” DJ Kobayashi (Batov Records / Soho Radio, UK)
“Excellent ep.” Robert Lochmann (Radio X, Germany)
“Got to say, love this!” DJ Abbo (Stomp Radio, UK)
“Full support.” Lorenzo Aldino (Jockey Club, Ibiza, Spain)
“Love this.” Jon Brent (Dusk Dubs, UK)
“I was sceptical about this project before I heard it. And completely blown away by how well it works as soon as I had a listen!” Jamie Renton (Chilli Fried, UK)
“Dele Sosimi is modern doyen of Afrobeat.” Jon Freer (Freer Sounds, UK)
“Great!” George Higham (Shades Recordings, UK)
“Perfect summertime sound.” Paul Knight (Reform Radio, UK)
“Fills your soul with pure joy.” Aja Allsop (Ketch A Vibe, UK)
“Dope! Can’t wait to play it out this weekend.” Tom Mannix (Various, Canada)
“Great.” Jim Wood (8 Track Music, UK)
“Perfect summertime sound.” Paul Knight (Reform Radio)
“Hot on the heels of his launch party show at the Jazz Cafe (London), the new Wah Wah 45’s album by Dele Sosimi & The Estuary 21, ‘The Confluence’ is out now.
Battling with loads of other Bandcamp Friday releases, this does stand out not only as it’s meeting of Afrobeat legend, Dele Sosimi with Sam Duckworth (once aka ‘Get Cape, Wear Cape, Fly’) it’s the start “The Estuary 21”.
Since the connection with Wah Wah 45s, Dele has linked up with diverse musicians as The Milk, The ‘meets’ Prince Fatty & Nostalgia 77 project (Nostalgia 77 having just released their new album on Jazzman, review HERE), Lokkhi Terra, Eparapo and Medlar so we should not be surprised that The Shrine meets Southend-on-Sea at ‘The Confluence’!
The six track have a stong afrobeat/pop sound, particualary the single and ‘Open Up’ which also features UK jazz legend and Essex resident, Snowboy (aka Mark Cotgrove – last seen live in Dorset at the time of his last LP, ‘New York Afternoon’ with the Latin Section).
Other highlights for me are ‘Ori Mi’ and ‘Òtító Ti Jáde’ but this is such a great production.
I’ll save the story as to how Dele Sosimi got involved with Wah Wah 45s’ Dom Servini for another day, but back in 2005 he was telling me of his philosphy “Any music that has that little twist, a bit of added spice that separates it from the norm is alright by me.”‘The Confluence ‘ has that “added spice” and it’s more than alright by me too!”
Gerry Hectic (You And The Music, UK)